Monday 26 May 2014

Langkawi Trip (June School Holidays)

It was the school holidays (A dated post as the trip was a year back) and we decided to bring our whole family for a trip to Langkawi. We have been to Bali, Phuket and Bintan frequently and have also been to Krabi and Hua Hin once. So we decided to give Langkawi a shot this time round. It is a regional beach destination that is not on our conquered list yet. We hope it will be a perfect destination for our family trip after a few misses due to either too expensive air ticket prices or it was simply just not on the top of our pecking order

We started doing our research over tripadvisor and on whatever related websites we could come across through google search. We finally decided to stay in the Berjaya Resorts which have a 4 star rating through the overall reviews. We booked a rainforest view room as the sea-facing seems great but we have small kids, so it is better be on the cautious side.

We booked a Silkair flight and off we go on the first week of June for a 4 days 3 nights trip. Upon arrival in Langkawi Airport which took us around 1.5 hours, we are all ready to explore the beautiful island of Langkawi.. 

Once you reach the baggage reclaim area after clearing the customs, there are lots of car rental companies that are soliciting  for your business. We rented a car from one of the counters and after some slight bargaining, I manage to get a Proton Wira for around 70 ringgit per day with a 50 ringgit deposit. It is highly advisable to rent a car to self drive in order to fully explore Langkawi based on our recent experience. The roads are not congested, so it makes driving a breeze.

Based on my own observation, there are 4 main areas in Langkawi to explore and they are A) Berjaya area (it is where my hotel is located), B) Cenang Area (it is where the hype is, just like Patong in Phuket), C) Kuah Town (this is the city center) and D) Eastern Northern Side of the Island (They have some interesting places to visit such as the black sand beach and a waterfall. I have attached a tourist map and highlighted the areas for you to have a better idea.
Here is a summary of things to look out for:
1) Berjaya Hotel  have a nice thai restaurant which you have to reserve through the concierge and there is also a natural walk conducted at 6-6.30pm around the hotel compounds which is kind of interesting. The beach at Berjaya Hotel is really nice and when the sunlight rays are strong, the water are almost blue just like in the Mediterranean sea.
2) Cenang area might be a better choice to stay for those who are not into nature and more into street food and shopping.
3) There is a shopping center at the middle of Cenang, you could get good tour tickets over there whereby our island hopping price was around 25 ringgit per pax versus the quoted 50 ringgit elsewhere. Also, they have the most decent toilet but it cost around 2 ringgit per entry if I recall correctly. Finally, it is a good place to chill as it is the location with good air conditioning.
4) There is a cable car attraction to a mountain whereby I find it is kind of overhyped as there is basically nothing much to do apart from 2 small cafes once you are up in the mountain. Nonetheless, you can soak in the great scenery.
5) In Kuah Town, the must see will be the huge eagle monument. There are lots of factory outlets but it is more the chocolates, tidbits and kitchen ware that are worth a look at.
6) For car parks, just have to be creative and there are actually lots of spots to do creative parking.
To sum up, it is ok but not compelling enough to warrant a second visit.